As a Headteacher, Del recommended Shout to many of her students as somewhere they could turn to for free, anonymous and 24/7 support at the end of their phones. Passionate about mental health, once retired, Del decided it was time to take part in the training to become a Shout Volunteer and recently took our two millionth conversation.
What made you decide to become a Shout Volunteer?
I was a Headteacher when Shout started up. It was a hugely welcome addition to have a free, 24/7 text service available for all ages. We, like so many other schools, colleges, workplaces and GP surgeries, were delighted to recommend it to our students as somewhere they could reach out for much-needed support. I’ve always been passionate about mental health and when I retired, I was really pleased to have the time to become a Shout volunteer myself.
It is a privilege to be there for the huge number of texters who access the service every week, to listen, care and to stand with them as they find their way through difficult moments.
What do you find most rewarding about being a Shout Volunteer?
It has been extremely rewarding to be a part of the Shout team. It is a privilege to be there for the huge number of texters who access the service every week, to listen, care and to stand with them as they find their way through difficult moments.
How did it feel to take our two millionth conversation recently?
It was wonderful to hear that Shout had taken an incredible two million conversations with people in need of support. There is such an enormous need and it’s great that Shout is able to be there 24/7 for anyone who wants some support. It is humbling to be part of the service - I am delighted to be part of the team.
What are some of the challenges you've experienced?
It’s always a challenge to try to find the best way to support each individual and hopefully to help them find a bit of relief on a tough day, or at least to know that someone listened and cared.
Technology allows us to be there 24/7 for those who need someone to talk to, and they can access us easily on their phones. Also, many people find it easier not having to talk face-to-face.
How do you find volunteering for a digital-based organisation?
I love the fact that Shout is an entirely digital-based organisation.
Technology allows us to be there 24/7 for those who need someone to talk to, and they can access us easily on their phones. Also, many find it easier not having to talk face-to-face.
As volunteers, we can do it from our own homes and at times that fit with everything else we do.
Have you been able to use any of the training or skills you've developed as a Shout Volunteer in your day-to-day and/or professional life?
The training is excellent, so as volunteers we feel equipped to be there for any texter, with the support of the professionally trained Clinical supervisors. The training and skills I’ve acquired are useful in all aspects of life, including my ongoing involvement in schools, my ability to support others, and my own personal development.
Would you recommend becoming a Shout Volunteer?
I would recommend anyone to consider becoming a Shout volunteer - it is such a privilege to be there for people who need someone to be with them at a challenging time.